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APOLINA MAKES: Grass dollies

Caroline -Apolina

Posted on March 15 2020

Make
From late summer to the last days of autumn, fields and wild grassy areas are full of long weeds and grasses with pretty seed heads. These pliant, straw-like grasses are perfect for making grass dollies, a nod to the traditional harvest time craft of making dolls – for play and symbolic decoration – from the remnants of a harvested wheat or corn field. This craft is easier for older children and adults, but little ones can help and will certainly love the result!
1/
Gather a big bunch of long grasses. If your grasses are still green or partly green, rather than entirely dried, they will be easier to bend into shape without snapping. Use your grasses as soon as you can.

2/
Select a decent amount of your grasses. Find the middle of your bunch and bend it gently in half. Wrap some embroidery thread or string firmly around the middle of the fold a few times and tie it. This will be the very top of your dolly’s head.

3/
Form the head by wrapping some more thread firmly around the whole bunch, a little way down from the top. Tie it off securely. Your grasses are already starting to come to life!
4/
Cut a shorter bunch of grasses from your main pile for the arms. Place it horizontally behind the dolly and secure it in place with some more thread, wrapped in a criss-cross to make the chest area. Once tied in place, you can trim the ends of the arms to your desired length. Now you have a mama or girl dolly! If you’d like to make legs, simply divide the skirt of the dolly into two, and tie thread as before, around the ankle area.
5/
Now for our favourite part! Use fabric scraps to make your doll some teeny clothes. Wrap the fabric around as you like and using a needle and thread, tack the clothes into place with a few stitches. To embellish your dolly you can tuck extra seed heads into their skirts, arms, or even into their heads as faces or hair.
4/
It’s play time! Our dolly mama immediately took her children off to bed in a shoe box. :) What will yours get up to?

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